Run No. 1907

Sunday 13th September

Pub: The Orange Tree

Beers: Titanic Plum Porter, GK Abbot, Burton Bridge

Location: Baldock

Hare/s: Fliptop

Runners: 19

Virgins: 0

Visitors: 0

Newies: 2

Après: 0

Hash Hounds: 0

Total: 21

Membership: Social Distacning in Bagdad (Baldock gets its name from the Old French for Bagdad)


            There were two late comers for today’s Trail [Can we have such a thing on staggered start times? – Ed] & they were My Lil’ & Mr X, who had got the Train to Baldock, on their way to the venue they would see others running toward them in their ‘Bubbles’ from a staggered start [It was not staggered due to alcohol but Covid19 restrictions! – Ed] on the way down Football Close toward the main A507 Station Road.

            The first group consisted of Milf & Where’s Wally? with Tom & Ben, who were followed on by Des Res, then a bit further back were Amy & Howard.  On reaching the junction with Jackson Street the late comers saw Mother & Lemming, who lent them their sanitized car keys to store their change of clothes, then they saw Kylie at the far south-eastern end of this back street of terraced homes.

Instead of following the Trail backward & bumping into the rest of the strung out Pack, Mr X & My Lil’ kept a distance by cutting through a passageway out to Church Street & then on over to weave their way around on through Brewery Lane to come out near to the Pub.  The Hare was still waiting outside the venue to put the next arrivals on the right path, but having seen the way the Trail would go, & in need for some Squirrel scaring, My Lil’ quickly disappeared back down Brewery lane!

Having lubed up sanitized the car keys, & stowed gear, Mr X then hobbled off back down Brewery Lane but My Lil’ had run off out of sight!  So, he turned to walk down Pond Lane, where he picked up Trail back on Norton Road, there No Eye Deer & Whatevershesays who were just setting off on the western side of the street & heading toward the CHK on the corner of West Avenue.

Mr X called across & said that he had already seen the others & knew that the Trail would take to the wide alleyway a little way down off to the east on the side of the road & so he was already on, sure enough a small arrow was found by the corner of the old brick wall & “On!” was called away on the footpath that runs along by the graveyard to the north, this old route leads into the Grounds of St Mary the Virgin.  Along the way there was a hop up on to the long thin green space of graveyard in order to keep a distance from a couple of on-coming civilians.

After 100 Yards or so the Trail came out by the old Norman edifice of St Mary the Virgin, as Mr X, No Eye Deer & Whatevershesays made their way out by the white board memorial by the steps down on to Church Street the Bells of the church began to chime in the quarter Hour.  The long white board had a dedication on it to the young son of a local family who was killed when a scaffold fell on him several hundred yards ago.

Anyhow, the Trail was marked down Church Street & then crossed to take to Orchard Road, a quiet narrow back street that leads on to Jackson Street, No Eye Deer was running this section & got away from the other two for a little while but was then seen again as she must have gone astray & was now not too far off in the distance as they trail ran some 70 Yards out to the Station Road.

Here the Trail was marked over the newish zebra crossing, so new is it that some of the locals couldn’t see it as a woman drove straight through without even slowing as the RA stepped on to the black & white surface!  By now My Lil’ had now caught up with as he came out from having gone off to scare the local Squirrels!  As the Trail turned nor-nor-west to pass beneath the arch of the railway bridge, which is now showing some battle scars where on-coming traffic has hit the robust brickwork!  [Probably the woman who doesn’t stop at crossings?

North of the railway lines & No Eye Deer was out of sight again, but not for long as she was soon back emerging from the path leading away eastward in to the dead end of Larkins Close, seems she fell foul of the CHK out on the A507.  The Hare was now up with what was thought to be the tail of the Hash as Trail was now picked up 20 yards up the road & on to a CHK where Bygrave Road joins from the east on to the main route.

Mr X had a brief spell of heading out over to the west side of the road, as he thought of searching over down by the local allotments on the common, but was called back by the Hare as “On!” was found to the east on Bygrave Road, so after a spot of Jay-walking, Mr X was now on behind Whatevershesays as No Eye Deer’s & My Lil’ were off away beyond the homes on Bygrave Road to the rural arable area of hedged-in farmland.

The road narrowed to a country lane, then the Trail changed direction by taking the due north footpath running by the edge of Laymore Farm.  Now, the small strung out group ran out of the tree-lined route at the end of the farm to the open fields behind.

            Ahead lay the rolling smooth harrowed farm land heading up the ridge to the north on a slightly convoluted weave to the start of the path of some 120 Yards up to the top of the peak, then another 120 yards down the gentle slope over the dusty loam of the Bygrave Common.  As the Trail descended some noticed that there was a wiff in the air, Mother claimed she failed to notice this manure smell when she passed this!

            Some hoped that they would see Paxo & Pebbledash by now in the distance, but even they were out of sight as the second Knitting Circle came down to the hedgerow in the bottom of the vale.  No Eye Deer led the way from the CHK at the crossroads with another footpath running through the floor of the valley, ignoring the continuation up the second ridge of arable land, as well as the option to the northeast.

            Along this section the first group through got the attention of a photographer, who clicked Milf in action [Steady Pebbledash! – Ed] as they ran through, then Whatevershesays had a remote conversation with a couple of dog walkers, who seemed to show some interest in the Hash.

            The Trail headed down to the southwest & as it headed away, Mr X claimed that his wonky leg had made him ‘Sludge-off’ the corner off to get on the footpath well behind the rest, this section of Trail was runnable for him, not too many trip hazards, which was great as he didn’t want to hang around with the wiff in the air.  Looking through the hedge it was clear that something had been added to the opposite field, for the northern side of the hedgerow had a far darker hue to the almost grey loam on the southern side.

            It was a long 300 yards back to the A507, the last bit taking the Hash on by the small units & outbuildings before stopping by the edge of the busy road, there arrows directed the way straight over to the western side that has the only footpath.  No Eye Deer & My Lil’ were well on their way up to the North, Whatevershesays & Mr X were now in sheep mode & blindly followed on, well they didn’t spend too much time looking at the path for markings as they had to keep their eyes peel to avoid the overgrown & over hanging bramble runners from the hedgerow.

            Reaching Norton Mill Lane & it now dawned on them that they all were off Trail, for no Dust was found down the lane, or further up to the north!  So, Mr X hobbled away back southward & on reaching the section where the trail crossed a single arrow was spotted on an old GPO cover a little way to the south.

            As Mr X called on he could see that Flying Solo was coming along the footpath by the outbuildings over the road, she was with Isabel & Elizabeth who were cycling, seems Scooters have had their day!  Anyhow, the Trail would come off of the busy overgrown road side just a few yards down the road, as arrows pointed the way by the black timber panelled barn to lead in to Blackhorse Farm.

            While My Lil’ picked up the Trail through the gap between two of the homes, Mr X went back to make sure that Flying Solo & her Horrors didn’t miss the turn off & knew which was to go through the farmyard.  His good deed done as they all followed on, with No Eye Deer & Whatevershesays also picking up on the change of direction back on the road.

            The Trail now lead on to a fenced-in footpath, running below a lake to the north, then it arced southward as it ran in to the northern edge of an area of woodland, this section had the a few encroaching clumps of Nettles, sadly no one listened to the RA as he said “Nettles don’t sting this time of year!” as one of Flying Solo’s girls discovered as she brushed against the Urtica Dioica while cycling a bit further along.

The Trail was now marked by the Hare & the next CHK was found on a triangle where a footpath runs away to the south was already directing the way southwestward & then on up a set of wooden steps by the paddocks to the west.

            Flying Solo now found that scooters may be old hat, but they are a lot lighter than hauling the girls’ bikes up the tall flight of steps!  Having finished lugging the bikes up to the ridge, the Trail would now continue southward on the track heading toward the North Herts Equestrian Centre, on the way a terrier was found standing at the side of the path, he was watching his owner do a bit of scrumping of the apples to the side of the way.

The tail of the Hash were now not too far behind the Hare & My Lil’ as they ran along a nice high dry flat path up on the tree-lined hump of a ridge heading due south with Ivel Springs to the east.  The last section of the Trail was to lead down behind the back of the old football club grounds, home to Baldock Town [Known as the Reds (unless they are playing away when their kit is blue? – Ed]

 With the Spartan League club to the west & the sewage treatment works to the east, the Trail would now come out by the embankment for the railway line high above to the south, the last bit was to pass through the tunnel & out on to Norton Road.  Flying Solo was found here, trying to find a doc leaf for one of her Horrors who had been stung earlier [Surely not! – Ed]

As Mr X went on to get the change of clothes out of Lemming & Mothers Car, Mother spotted him & came over, she was unimpressed by Mr X claiming he was ‘lubing up’ his hands again (with hand sanitizer) before delving down his shorts to retrieve the car key…………………from out of the small pocket inside the old Texas State Flag shorts!

In the Orange Tree Garden & the last ones back noticed Milf & Kylie had already moved on as they were having a Barbeque that afternoon, My Lil’ commented on the fact he was not invited! [Meaow! – Ed]

This venue is probably the best laid out Covid-19 precautions of any Pub that has been recently visited, the smell of new timber was in the air, with lots new large solid benches for ‘Six Only’ but the Hash being the Hash we stuck to sitting in Pods of Four from the Trail.  Even in Pods of Four, sitting at the tables under the Government distance guidelines, Des Res was still wearing his mask. [Better safe than sorry! – Ed]

All of these tables were under cover, the new stage & side gazebos were impressive as well as the outside Bars, then there was the selection of Ales & Ciders on sale.  It all made for a nice hour or so after the Trail on a nice sunny day.

There were plenty of lube jokes going around, while Philippa said that she enjoyed the Scribes Jokes in the sterilized paper Trash!